To our viewers who subscribe to Oceanic (Spectrum):

Oceanic (Spectrum) is making changes to the services they provide to cable subscribers. If you are a Spectrum subscriber and you currently connect the cable line directly into your television (versus through a cable box), you will lose the ability to receive any channels within the next month. You may have already received a notice from Spectrum informing you of this. Please do not ignore the notice. You will need to order equipment by February 13, 2018, in order to continue to watch KIKU and other channels on your television.

If you already have an existing set-top-box, you should not be affected by this change.

Kohaku (Red and White Song Contest) Poll

Thank you for participating in our Kohaku poll and sharing your comments regarding the show. The results were overwhelmingly and resoundingly in favor of us continuing to air the Red and White Song Contest.

It was especially heartening to read your comments. Many of you wrote about Kohaku being a long-standing New Year’s tradition in your homes. Others reminisced of watching the show with your grandparents and parents when you were children. Many shared that Kohaku keeps you connected to your Japanese culture. And even those of you who prefer enka had positive, thoughtful comments about how Japan is changing, and Kohaku needs to change with the times.

So thank you again for letting us know how you feel. Your feedback is valued and appreciated.

Happy New Year!

Phyllis Kihara

 

Sayonara to Soko ga Shiritai

Yes, we’re saying sayonara to Soko ga Shiritai. After more than 20 years on KIKU, this Friday, 3/24/17, will be the last time we play the show.

We are sad, excited and nervous all at the same time. Sad because Soko ga Shiritai has been such a regular part of our lives for so long. The show had a great concept and was very well produced. It took us to Japan’s famous sites as well as its not so famous quaint back alleys, all the while sharing interesting things about the places, people, and foods of Japan. Its visiting reporters were people we could relate to, and they asked questions we were curious about, too. To this day, people still tell me their interest in visiting Japan was first spurred by watching Soko ga Shiritai.

Excited because although it’s the end of an era, it’s time to learn new things, see new places, and meet new people! We are the first to admit Soko ga Shiritai episodes are dated and have been played and replayed. And replayed. But it’s been difficult to find a replacement, especially at a price we could afford. Japanese programming is extremely expensive, which has made finding a replacement for Soko ga Shiritai extremely challenging. But you deserve to see the Japan of today and we’re excited to share more current programs about Japan with you.

And finally, nervous because there is no show being produced today that is exactly like Soko ga Shiritai. Many have tried to imitate it, but no one show is an exact replica. And since Soko ga Shiritai is no longer being produced, our solution has been to find a series of different programs with similar concepts that focus on the places, people, and foods of Japan. The first in this series is a program titled “Kaze ni Fukarete” or “The Current”. You’ll even recognize one of the hosts, Hiroshi Sekiguchi, from another KIKU show, Dotchi.  Please give these new shows a try and let us know what you think.

To usher in Soko ga Japan, we’re giving away a trip for two to Japan! Please tune in to Soko ga Japan starting Monday, March 27 for a chance to win. Each Monday and Thursday, we’ll be giving you a clue about somewhere in Japan. Each Tuesday and Friday, we’ll be giving you the answer to the previous night’s clue. There will be two questions/answers per week for five weeks. Collect the correct answers for all five weeks, then send in your 10 answers to KIKU-TV. We will randomly select a winner from all of the correct entries.

Monday – clue

Tuesday – answer to Monday’s clue

Thursday – clue

Friday – answer to Thursday’s clue

Thank you for supporting KIKU-TV and Soko ga Shiritai for so many years. We look forward to sharing more of Japan with you through Soko ga Japan.

Ja, ne!

 

Filipino Fiesta

KIKU-TV will be at the Filipino Fiesta tomorrow (Saturday, May 14)! Please come visit our booth and take a picture with Giselle Tongi from Kababayan Today! Or, spin our prize wheel for a special gift! The Filipino Fiesta takes place from 9am to 5pm at Kapiolani Park. See you there!

Love him or hate him?

One of the most popular drama series on KIKU is Doctors (Saikyou no Meii). We just began airing the third season of this series this past Monday at 8pm.

Some would say that the show’s popularity is due to the handsome actor, Ikki Sawamura, who stars as the highly principled and capable Dr. Sagara. Dr. Sagara is employed at Dogami General Hospital, a private facility that is struggling to regain its integrity amid a reputation of greed and corrupt management practices. Dr. Sagara’s nemesis at the hospital is the director’s nephew, Dr. Suguru Moriyama, played by actor Masanobu Takashima. The two are constantly at odds over hospital practices and patient treatments.

In my opinion, Masanobu Takashima is the real star of the show. He plays an immature, self-centered, spoiled doctor yearning for attention and acknowledgment. He’s such a good actor because each episode makes you hate Dr. Moriyama and his selfish tactics even more. But you also see a vulnerable side to him that makes him likeable, too.

What do you think? Do you love him or hate him?

Ja, ne!

Doctors #3 is coming!!!

One of the most popular and most requested series on KIKU is coming back for a third season: Doctors 3. Once again, the handsome, kind, and capable Dr. Sagara will have to use his subtle (and sometimes devious) skills to make things happen at Dogami General Hospital, especially when dealing with his nemesis, the ambitious and egotistical Dr. Moriyama.

Doctors 3 begins Monday, March 21, at 8pm. There are nine episodes in this series. The Japanese title is Saikyou no Meii.

Ja, ne!

New Series Coming Up

This Thursday, 2/4, we begin a new series titled Truth of Zero at 9pm. It is about a brilliant but socially inept medical examiner named Mao Matsumoto. Mao is a genius with an IQ of 150, but she is so absorbed in the world of forensic medicine that she has no friends, and no interest in food, fashion, or dating. Her fellow medical examiners and team of detectives must figure out a way to get through to this oddball who is only concerned about her work. The Japanese title for this series is Zero no Shinjitsu.

Also, the second year of Behind the Noren is about to begin! We have been re-airing the first series on Tuesday nights at 9pm, but now that we are in between taiga dramas, Behind the Noren is also airing at 8pm on Tuesday nights.

The first half hour of Behind the Noren 2 will air on Sunday, 2/14, from 9:30-10pm. From the next week on, it’ll air as a full hour on Sunday nights from 9-10pm.

In year 2 of Behind the Noren, a new rival to become the proprietress of the inn appears. When Naoko’s husband Shosuke disappears once again, his mother Shino sends Naoko to Taiwan to bring him back. While she is gone, Shino’s niece Yukiko appears to help out at the inn, and she becomes Naoko’s strongest rival for the position. The Japanese title for this series is Hanayome Noren.

Ja, ne!

 

The New Taiga Drama

Last week, we aired the 50th and final episode of Hana Moyu, which was NHK’s 54th Taiga drama. Many viewers have called or emailed asking for information about the next Taiga drama.

The 55th Taiga drama is titled Sanada Maru. It is about the life of Yukimura Sanada, who is considered one of Japan’s last great commanders of the Sengoku — or warring — period. Yukimura’s actual name was Nobushige, and he was born to an exceptionally intelligent father, Masayuki Sanada, who was himself considered a great military strategist.

The Sengoku period lasted from 1467-1603 and was a time of great political turbulence, social upheaval, and almost constant military battles. Eventually, three warlords emerged as key figures  in unifying Japan and ending the warring period: Oda Nobunaga, Hideyoshi Toyotomi, and Tokugawa Ieyasu.

Sanada Yukimura was aligned with Toyotomi, and led the defense of Toyotomi’s stronghold, Osaka Castle, against the much larger forces of Tokugawa. Sanada built a fortress on the periphery of Osaka Castle which came to be known as Sanada Maru. In the Siege of Osaka, the fortress was impenetrable, which helped solidify Sanada’s legendary status. He has been called “a hero who may appear once in a hundred years”.

Sanada Maru begins on Tuesday, February 16, at 8pm.

Ja, ne!

KIKU in HD!

KIKU is available in HD! And…just in time for the Red and White Song Contest! We do not have an HD channel on the Oceanic Time Warner or Hawaiian Telecom cable systems yet, but if you receive KIKU over the air, we are broadcasting in HD on channel 20.2!

Happy New Year!